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“The requirement of vehicles in India is huge”

“The requirement of vehicles in India is huge”

Pankaj Dubey, Managing Director, Polaris India

Mar 24, 2014 10:38 AM

The requirement of vehicles in India is huge as the penetration is still very low. India is a nation of 1.2 billion people and if you look at the two-wheeler sales in India, it is almost two crore annually. It means that close to 2 per cent of the Indian population is buying two wheelers every year and the total percentage of car buyers is even lower. Assuming that life of the vehicle ranges from three years to 10 years, the scope of growth in India is huge. While the growth of the industry is linked to the overall growth of the economy, the automobile industry in India is bound to grow. There is immense scope for many new ideas to come and help the industry grow from the level it has achieved today.

There was a time when India was purely a scooter-led market while motorcycles were selling more the world over and everyone was surprised on the unique market dynamics. However, today it has changed and motorcycles are selling much more than scooters. We have learned from history that if the macroeconomic indicators are kept in balance, where the income is growing more than the rate of inflation, the automobile industry will grow at a fast pace. Similarly, in cars, in the 1980s, everyone was buying the lowest model available in the market but nobody wants to be seen in the lowest model now. The aspirational level of the Indian population has increased dramatically over the past two decades. If the macroeconomic indicators are taken care of, the industry can grow at a healthy pace for the next 30-40 years.

The segment that we operate in – ATVs – is still at a very nascent stage. We launched our India operations in August 2011. We are the only brand present in India with a view to market ATVs and being the world’s market leader, we are committed to developing this market. We have seen that the interest in the product category is huge and there is immense potential for growth in the ATV segment. We today have network in all the major towns and everywhere the interest level is very high. At this moment, the category is still a small part of the overall industry but moving forward it will turn into a big segment of the industry. We are very happy with the growth that we have got so far and we are sure that in future the growth will be even higher. And as more global players join us in the Indian industry, we will be able to grow the segment at a much faster pace.

As a manufacturing base, India has already got all the major car and two-wheeler manufacturers. It is already improved a lot and factors like development of the auto component industry have contributed to improving the overall quality. These are all positive signs and in that sense the policies to promote manufacturing in India from the government have helped the industry grow. This generates so much additional income and creates opportunities for the Indian population. India is very competitive today in the manufacturing industry in terms of cost of operations.

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